Brewster Rotary Support for Youth in the CommunityFebruary 2, 2021
The partnership between the Rotary Club of Brewster and Green Chimneys is a long-standing one, with Rotary members serving as volunteers, advocates and supporters of Green Chimneys for decades. Each year, the group contributes to Green Chimneys’ Community-Based Services program for the benefit of Putnam County youth and their families. This year’s gift was designated for a new Resource Room at the program’s Community Outreach Center in the Village of Brewster.
The Outreach Center is a well established program for youth ages 10-21 across Putnam County and areas just over the borders of Westchester and Dutchess Counties. It offers after school and weekend activities, peer groups, and counseling services, all free of charge. “Having a safe place to go, as well as proper academic support is crucial for youth,” says Community-Based Services Director Clare Rigano. ”But even more important, it enables access to those who may need critical support services. By getting to know the youth who attend the Center, staff can start to identify who needs assistance and what type.”
The Brewster Rotary supported the Resource Room effort through volunteer renovation activities and funding to help with furnishings and supplies. Kristin Dionne, Associate Executive Director of Development for Green Chimneys, is grateful for the matching challenge of $2,000 provided by Brewster Rotary, “which enabled us to encourage new donations and leverage increased giving by so many of our supporters, and helped us more than double Rotary’s gift to a total of $4,500. Rotary has been a wonderful partner in our work within the local community.”
The Resource Room has been dedicated to Brewster Rotary in honor of its longtime commitment to the work of Green Chimneys. Rotarian Dr. Marty Vigdor recalls that the Outreach Center began with the idea of hosting a teen hotline: “But it became apparent that what youth really needed was a place to congregate. Brewster Rotary “adopted” the program and it became an ongoing initiative in our roster of community work,” he says. “We are proud to have watched the program evolve and expand over the years; it’s a great example of the impact such services can have on the youth who need them.”
Green Chimneys Community-Based Services, along with all of Green Chimneys’ programs, remains close to Dr. Vigdor’s heart as he spent 36 years as one of the agency’s chief clinicians, treating hundreds of children and working side by side with founders Myra and Rollo Ross.